Long tables cover the quad on a hot summer’s day at DePaul. The plastic pink tablecloths rustle every so slightly in the breeze as hundreds of manicured hands work painstakingly with paint, markers, and glitter. Is this some sort of early Welcome Week activity? Did someone plan arts and crafts on the quad? No. This is a t-shirt design contest.
It is the bane of every sorority’s existence: What to do when you run out of t-shirt ideas? The problem has recently plagued our very own sororities at DePaul, and for this reason, the sororities have decided to come together to do what they do best (organizing events/bake sales) with what they do second best (designing those t-shirts). Hoards of sorority sisters have gathered to bedazzle with the best and win the t-shirt design championship.
The problem arose from the excessive usage of t-shirts. The average sorority reports having an event every second or third day of the week, 95% of which require t-shirt documentation of the event. Thusly, sororities depend on a very strict database of shirts to archive their house histories. Since hundreds of t-shirts are designed each year, their filing cabinets can be quite extensive.
With so many t-shirts needing to be designed, it doesn’t take long before inspiration runs out for original work. When asked about reusing previous designs, we were met with faces of shock and horror from every sorority girl within a fifteen-foot radius. “That’s just not possible,” and “Who do you think we are? A high school sports team?” were the most common responses received.
The only solution was to create a contest in which every sister is required to submit an entry for a standard t-shirt with her sorority’s name on it. When questioned on how the other hundreds of t-shirts will be designed, one sister’s eyes glazed over as she murmured something incoherent about another bake sale. It is safe to say that discussion is still pending.
Entries for the contest will be judged on a strict point system. Every entry gets twenty points for putting their sorority’s name on the shirt and another twenty points for using either pink or purple as the base color. A t-shirt will earn ten points if the sorority’s official flower, animal, or rock formation is used in the design — and another point for each individual grain of glitter that is utilized in the creation of the t-shirt. This point system has so far been untested in its effectiveness, but most sisters report “buckets of enthusiasm” on its potential for success. It should be noted that the size of the bucket was not specified.
The winner of the contest will receive the title of T-Shirt Design Champion and one free t-shirt. Their design will then be sent to be made into t-shirts for every member of the sorority as it will be the first t-shirt handed out of the new school year. That is, besides the t-shirts that were handed out for participating in the t-shirt design contest.